World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Mardi

Article Id: WHEBN0001000798
Reproduction Date:

Title: Mardi  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Moby-Dick, Herman Melville, Redburn, Typee, 2010 Piala Indonesia
Collection: 1849 Novels, 19Th-Century American Novels, Novels by Herman Melville, Novels Set in Oceania
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Mardi

Mardi
First edition title page
Author Herman Melville
Country United States, England
Language English
Genre Romance literature
Published
  • 1849 (New York: Harper & Brothers)
  • 1849 (London: Richard Bentley)
Media type Print
Preceded by Omoo
Followed by Redburn

Mardi, and a Voyage Thither is the third book by American writer Herman Melville, first published in London in 1849. Beginning as a travelogue in the vein of the author's two previous efforts, the adventure story gives way to a romance story, which in its turn gives way to a philosophical quest.

Contents

  • Overview 1
  • Critical response 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Overview

Mardi is Melville's first pure fiction work (while featuring fictional narrators, his previous novels were heavily autobiographical). It details (much like Typee and Omoo) the travelings of an American sailor who abandons his whaling vessel to explore the South Pacific. Unlike the first two, however, Mardi is highly philosophical and said to be the first work to show Melville's true potential. The tale begins as a simple narrative, but quickly focuses upon discourse between the main characters and their interactions with the different symbolic countries they encounter. While not as cohesive or lengthy as Moby-Dick, it shares a similar writing style as well as many of the same themes.

As a preface to Mardi, Melville wrote somewhat ironically that his first two books were nonfiction but disbelieved; by the same pattern he hoped the fiction book would be accepted as fact.

Critical response

Mardi was a critical failure. One reviewer said the book contained "ideas in so thick a haze that we are unable to perceive distinctly which is which".[1] Nevertheless, Nathaniel Parker Willis found the work "exquisite".[1]

Nathaniel Hawthorne found Mardi a rich book "with depths here and there that compel a man to swim for his life... so good that one scarcely pardons the writer for not having brooded long over it, so as to make it a great deal better."[2]

The widespread disappointment of the critics hurt Melville yet he chose to view the book's reception philosophically, as the requisite growing pains of any author with high literary ambitions. "These attacks are matters of course, and are essential to the building up of any permanent reputation—if such would ever prove to be mine... But Time, which is the solver of all riddles, will solve Mardi."

References

  1. ^ a b Miller, Perry. The Raven and the Whale: The War of Words and Wits in the Era of Poe and Melville. New York: Harvest Book, 1956: 246.
  2. ^

External links

Online versions
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.